tv FOX 45 News at 10 FOX August 19, 2013 10:00pm-11:00pm EDT
>> barry: i retired. i thought i had retired anyway from electoral politics. in the last four years i've watched things get progressively worse, rather than sit around and complain about it, i decided to do something about it. >> so without further ado, mayor marion barry! >> barry: we gonna bring pride and respect back to ward 8, aren't we? stand up for ourselves, do for ourselves, make people respect us. >> yesterday is gone! yesterday is gone! >> nobody's perfect. >> it's criminal that you look around here and you see this here yo-yo talk about he's going to represent us, the city need a fighter. he need to find him a rock to crawl under somewhere and just vegetate and die. >> marion barry! this is marion barry, girl! >> because of the programs that marion barry fostered, people like my grandchildren did not fall through the cracks. >> we need marion barry!
>> look at ward 8. everybody sellin' drugs, they can't get jobs. yeah, i'm sayin' marion barry helped create the problem because he was on drugs. that's a bad role model. >> barry! barry! barry! >> we're talking about a piece of history, folks, marion barry, martin luther king. >> wave your hands, blow your horns, wave your hands, blow your horns. >> i met marion barry i think in 1968. he was taking a lot of chances. people weren't taking chances durin' that period. for a black guy, durin' that period, you really had to have balls to do it. and he had 'em.
>> when marion came to washington d.c., he came into a sleepy southern town. >> white business, white political power, white everything ruled the city. >> the city was like a plantation. we didn't have elections. no mayor, no city council. we couldn't vote. congress controlled d.c. >> control of washington d.c.
was about one person, that's representative john mcmillan of south carolina. he was a racist. and so that guided all of his politics. he used the district in ways that were designed to maintain the segregation, keep black folks down. >> they'd all been told, we black people will never vote. politics is white people's business. we should never agitate white people. if they tell us to get off the street, get the hell off the street! >> barry: politically, we were nowhere. we were just backward. people weren't used to registering to vote because they couldn't vote for anything. it was awful. and that makes anybody want to get angry. and not only make you angry, make you want to do something about it. it was time for me, i think, to be here. >> woman: [screaming at police] >> barry: i live in the 3rd district, see, dig it? i work in the 3rd district, dig it?
and i deserve -- the people that live out there deserve the right to be here and they gonna come in here as long as i'm in here. >> police officer: this is by invitation only. >> man: i don't have a card! >> ivanhoe donaldson, deputy mayor: in rolls these young people who want to change the world, and among the leadership of that crowd was marion barry. >> barry: the issue is whether the people outside can come in. >> man: meeting will come to order! >> barry: so what? >> man: to order! >> barry: bang again! it is order. we want the people outside inside, that's all. >> woman: ahhhh! get off of me! >> barry: and ain't nobody gonna put me out either! i wish you would touch me by putting me out of here! go get all of them! >> jesse jackson: he was militant. he was a rabble-rouser, and a thinker. >> adrienne washington: marion barry personified james brown's theme song "say it loud, i'm black and i'm proud." he was tall, he was handsome. >> barry: maybe we're happy that the mayor asked us to come here, i'm not. no big thing for me, i've been on more important committees than this.
>> donaldson: he was arrogant. people do not like arrogant black men. white folks had a hard time dealing with that. a lot of black people had a hard time dealing with that. >> barry: everybody and his mother knows that the police is the number one problem in america. and if you all don't want to deal with that, that's your problem. >> marshall brown, campaign advisor: police brutality was big. you got to remember, most of the police department, their recruits came out of places like west virginia, south carolina, pennsylvania, maryland, they didn't even come from d.c. >> police officer: i tell you, i am actually ashamed that these young people are in my generation. if i were to do some of the stuff these punks are doing out on the street now, my old man would kick my fanny up around my ears. ♪ whoa, oh, oh ♪ whoa, oh, oh, oh-oh ♪ it's a cryin' shame >> i don't consider this riffraff and what-not out here in the streets part of the community. >> no more than three blacks were ever allowed to congregate. and they said, "look, you can't stand on this corner.
i don't care if you're holding a conversation with your cousin, move on." >> barry: i'm not concerned about what happens to marion barry because when i go out here, more than likely, i can deal with the police, more than likely. but i'm talkin' about what do we do for the 600,000 black people out here who do have problems with the police? >> elona evans-mcneil, campaign staff: marion and his cocky, arrogant, usual self, he felt untouchable. marion would say, "hell no, i ain't movin' on." and the police would remind him that he was not untouchable. they locked him up over and over and over again. >> barry: my role as a leader is to get something if i can do it, and be beat to death if i can do it. but if i'm gonna be beat to death i might as well get somethin' for it. ♪ whoa, oh, oh ♪ whoa, oh, oh, oh-oh >> brown: it was people like marion barry who brought about the consciousness here. he sort of was the spark who started all that. >> we want to control that which is supposed to be for us. >> brown: a lot of people couldn't articulate it; they couldn't explain how
they felt. marion knew exactly how they felt. >> barry: i went to the first meeting in the hope that i could get something done for black citizens in terms of the police department. >> he didn't know because he guessed at it, marion knew it because he lived among the people. >> mcneil: he was talking about black people are angry and tired of it, and they may, you know, explode at any time. mid to late '60s, there were eruptions of violence across the country. [sirens wailing] >> brown: the everyday black person, you could see them, they were just angry.
>> mcneil: and even though king was talking peace, the young people didn't see peace working. >> masses of our people are in the streets, we better get ourselves some guns and prepare ourselves. >> mcneil: and they were talking about violence, they weren't talking about non-violence. marion had a problem with that. marion had been trained to be non-violent, and he believed in it. >> guyot: marion barry comes out of the best, most creative, indigenous mass movement america has ever produced; the student non-violent coordinating committee, who changed the nature and form and function of leadership. >> jackson: marion was one of us, he was a marching, picketing protesting, freedom riding, risk taking young man who had that fire.
>> marion formed an organization called pride. marion was out there for the black guy to get a job. and so this organization held out the hope -- we're going to get jobs, we're going to put you to work. you're going to get some money. >> barry: how does one begin to measure dignity and hope? how does begin to measure increased motivation and self-perception? >> brown: marion went down and got the bottom of the barrel of the african-american men. the guys that everybody else had given up on. >> gerald lee, federal judge: the hustlers, the drug dealers, ex-convicts. the people that nobody wants to deal with. pride afforded us the opportunity to get a job. >> barry: these young black guys were in and out of jail, no hope, no help. we knew we had to instill a sense of pride that had been beat out of them, if they ever had it, because society doesn't make you feel proud.
we turned a lot of lives around, a lot of lives around. >> i'm an ex convict, you understand, and i've been to many places before i come to pride to try to get a job, this is the only place i could get a job. >> mcneil: for the first time the community saw these street dudes, these hoodlums, cleaning the street. it was a beautiful program! >> reporter: there's no doubt that pride is working. proof of it is that 2,800 dudes now have jobs and are living meaningful lives, all because of a chance they got from pride, when nobody else cared. >> they come in their uniforms, which they wear with great pride now, down the street, boom, beating on the trash can top because we are somebody! >> george pelecanos, writer: the message was, this is an army, and it's a black army. and that was scary to a lot of people. >> lee: they didn't dare arrest us because there was so many of us. we wanted to scare white folks and let them know we were about having power.
>> brown: now here's this guy, this black guy, who organized these guys. he might have a couple thousand of them, you know, and they honestly believed in marion. so, i mean, that was just powerful to have that. >> barry: how do you categorize the inner feeling of the workers who said they have found respect and pride? we want to make it very clear, we don't think that pride is the answer, completely, to what's happening in america, but it's a beginning. >> max berry, political advisor: now, that distinguished him and it gave him a platform. you think he's not thinking of stepping on that? of course. and why not.
>> effi barry: washington was his city, and he loved washington. he loved washington! i really didn't know who he was. i had just moved here from new york and this man, every time i looked up, there he was. he approached me, and i was looking in my purse, and he said, "is there anything in that bag for me?" and i said, "excuse me, what do you mean? what would you like for me to find in my bag?" he said, "your phone number." >> barry: she said, "i'm not giving you my phone number. you won't call me anyway." and i said, "just tell me what it is." >> effi: so i just gave it to him, you know, thinking,
well, you know, he'll never remember. >> barry: next day i called her, went out the next couple days and started seeing each other, and that was it. i mean, she was just stunningly beautiful, physically, but she had a great spirit, and we just sort of connected. >> effi: i thought he was one of the most brilliant men i had ever met. [sirens wailing] >> ...with the gunman inside the building. where i can see though -- although we understand there have been gunshot fired ... >> effi: i got paged from my office and the secretary told me that there's been an incident at the district building. >> reporter: the suspects are heavily armed. we understand that they may be arabs.
>> black muslim: we are the hanafi muslim community. we're holding 15 hostages here. we want the people in this country to stop persecuting and torturing muslims. >> jim vance, wrc news: there was terror, in large part, because nobody knew what the hell was going on. >> black muslim: if the demands aren't met their heads will be chopped off and they'll be thrown out the window. >> bruce johnson, wusa news: our assignment desk came over, "there's been a shooting at the district building." pulled right in front of the building. there was a shootout up there. [gunshots] >> eyewitness: and i heard this pop in the hall, it sounded like a firecracker. somebody's fighting out there, i hear a shot, and just as i said that the chamber door opened and marion barry fell in, grasping his stomach, and said, "i've been shot!" >> johnson: there was a session going on inside council chambers. >> mcneil: marion was on the elevator coming back
from lunch, elevator door opened...boom! >> eyewitness: they took his coat off and took his shirt off, and you could see the blood gushing, you know, from between his fingers. >> johnson: obviously, one of the big questions is, how seriously is he wounded? is he going to live? >> berry: everyone was, "oh my god, he's shot, he's gonna die!" "oh, he's gonna live!" now he comes out with a bandage. well, he's a hero, like coming back from the war. >> barry: i guess the bullet probably ricocheted or something because if it had a direct hit, the doctors say that would have, you know, 'cuz it's right in my heart area, it would've gone through my heart and i wouldn't have been talking to you. >> berry: it was a politician's dream. [laughter] >> johnson: knowing marion, he had to have been thinking, "i can use this." >> marion barry understands. he knows that the mayor must address himself to all
the people. >> barry: people in the neighborhood have to have a feeling that the government belongs to them, a feeling that they can participate too, and that's the kind of direction that our city ought to be moving. >> take a stand. vote marion barry for mayor. >> johnson: everybody thought he was crazy, didn't have a chance. i mean, he wasn't in line; he wasn't high enough on the pecking order. there was walter washington, there was sterling tucker, and maybe three or four other people before marion barry. >> maurice jackson, georgetown university: walter washington has the support of the unions and the working class population of blacks. sterling tucker gets the support of the quote/unquote "gold coast blacks," the upper echelon of the african-american population. >> mcneil: and what is this marion doing thinking he can run against walter washington, or sterling tucker, who's sophisticated and bourgeois too. >> berry: as a political advisor, i saw potential problems. >> barry: hold it, hold it, hold it! >> woman: you didn't call nobody else. >> barry: every meeting that we have called -- no, every meeting we have called been ordered. man, this is really ---- up.
i want to do it this way. but i sure don't want to spend no more god damn time writing it. >> vance: marion always had a little edge on him. >> berry: marion barry's a little bit scary, he's intimidating, so he's a radical, right? >> vance: there was some black people in this town who did not think well of marion. >> mcneil: marion's hair wasn't straight enough. his skin wasn't light enough. he didn't look like them. he didn't talk like them. >> brown: marion would come in with his country tennessee accent, carryin' on, you take a guy in a dashiki. >> mcneil: marion would walk around with a chicken leg in his hand while he was talking. he might be conducting a meeting and be eatin' on a chicken leg or something, you know. >> berry: marion was a smart, educated man. he already knows he's got to change his image. >> mcneil: he had to take that dashiki off, he had to cut down that bush. he got these tailor made suits, you know, and he loved those suits. you got to take on that conservative look because you need the conservative vote. >> reporter: the name is marion barry.
he's an amazing man, he's an able man, with a future that could lead him to, who knows, but it could go pretty far. >> barry: for a long time, i didn't trust the system. i didn't want to be a part of it. i didn't want to do anything like that because i thought they would co-op you, take you -- suck you in and spit you out into something you don't want to be. but i thought a lot about it and decided that by running for mayor and using the power of that pen i could make drastic changes in washington. i intend to be an aggressive kind of mayor where i could make public policy as opposed to influencing public policy. >> mcneil: with marion, of course, in his campaign literature, it gave his background, it said what he did. and marion is never going to let you forget what he's done. >> reporter: some of our viewers might be interested in hearing something about your background; you were born in mississippi. >> guyot: people talked about his being from mississippi, being poor. >> his mother was a teenaged bride. they picked cotton, they worked
the land. that's a hard living. >> barry: and i grew up dirt, dirt, dirt, dirt poor. did all kind of odd jobs, you know, hustling pop bottles. back in the day you could get old rags and sell them too. >> guyot: people talked about his lifting himself up by his bootstraps and... >> reporter: you were an eagle scout, you were a member of the national honor society, you played varsity basketball, you received a masters in chemistry, you were on your way to a doctorate and then you shifted gears. >> barry: i think that movement was the catalyst and the lightning rod for the country, and i'm proud to have been a part of it. >> guyot: his civil rights work resonated with people that a lot of other things wouldn't have resonated with. >> johnson: he had instant credibility. as well he should have. >> effi: i don't know if i should say it, but we were living together, i said, "well, what are we going to do? i mean, you know, you can't be
living in sin and run for mayor at the same time." so we got married. our first year of marriage was a political campaign. it was one long night. i believed in him, i believed in his mission, i believed in the vision that he had for the city. >> washington: here you have this sophisticated woman. you know, you're looking at them thinking night and day. but it gave him some legitimacy that he did not have. >> mark plotkin, wtop radio: barry came off as youthful, as daring. liberal whites embraced marion barry. and then the washington post editorially helped him
tremendously by saying, "exactly what marion barry is, is what this city needs." >> tom sherwood, journalist: he had run as an anti-establishment candidate and gotten the endorsement of the washington post, which is the establishment in washington. he had done something amazing! >> plotkin: things are really going to happen, we're on our way. >> judge: so help me god. >> barry: so help me god! >> judge: you're in! [applause & cheers] >> barry: as i stand before you today in shadow of the white house, i am convinced more than ever that washington d.c., the nation's capital, is a city whose time has come. >> effi: it was a new boss in town. it's a new game.
>> barry: the past was too often defined by others for us and without us. >> washington: marion represented the possibility of all that people thought the civil rights movement would bring them. >> barry: let us march on to victory as one. thank you. [applause] ♪ i feel like bustin' loose ♪ bustin' loose ♪ give me the bridge now >> effi: i kind of felt like alice in wonderland. you know, i'm the new kid on the block. i absolutely have no idea about politics. basically, i'm an introverted person. so i said, "well, okay, if this is politics then i guess i have to get active in it!" i plan to do what i can too to make marion barry the best mayor in the united states.
>> reporter: the very best of luck to both of you. >> mcneil: there was hope. people had hope for the first time in...i don't know how long. >> harry jaffe, author/journalist: he had the potential to be martin luther king's successor, a leading political figure of our era. [applause] >> effi: people were high on the thought that change was coming. it was a new day. >> barry! barry! barry! >> barry! barry! barry! >> barry! barry! barry! >> barry! barry! barry! >> marion barry for ward 8, sir.
>> all right, brother. >> we're kicking off the campaign. >> one, two, three, hit it! ♪ >> east of the river, we need his help, he's coming back, round two. ♪ >> barry: you know, this ward is a great ward, i've been living here since 92. a lot of folks in ward 8 are down, out of work. ward 8 has the highest unemployment rate in the city. our education system is a wreck. >> yes, it is. >> barry: and i said it, you can get up, cant you? you can get up holding your head high. even if you fall down on your back and you look up, if you look up, you can get up, right? [applause] >> we're back with the politics program with mark plotkin here on wtop radio.
mark's guest is former d.c. mayor marion barry, now a candidate for city council in ward 8. two questions that everybody asks, and i'll be just as conventional as everybody else. this first one is: marion barry doesn't have any money, he's destitute, he's doing this because he needs the paycheck? answer that question. >> barry: people who said it are lying. i've never run for any office because of the money. oh no. my history is one of service, one of giving, one of sharing, one of empowering. so those are people who are cynical and just want to start some stuff. >> plotkin: okay. the second one is, mr. mayor, you're not up to it healthwise, you don't have the energy, you don't have the physical stamina to serve? >> barry: well, i'll tell you what, why don't you talk to some people who've seen me in the last four or five weeks campaigning. i'm more vigorous than ever before. i have diabetes, have blood pressure. you know 40% of all african-americans have diabetes and high blood pressure, but that doesn't affect your thinking. i've had it for 18 years, so i'm fine.
>> plotkin: let's have sandra seegars, opponent in the democratic september 14 ward 8 primary. go ahead, sandra. >> [on phone] sandra seegars: hi, good morning! >> barry: morning, ss. >> seegars: how you doing there? >> barry: winning. [laughter] >> seegars: yeah, so you say. but i do have concerns of some of the stuff that mark was saying. these things that you're talking about doing were things that you should have done when you were the mayor. >> barry: i'm not going to discuss that with you, sandra, i'm talking about ward 8? >> seegars: i know, where you been in ward 8 for the last six years? >> barry: in ward 8. >> seegars: i saw you in one meeting and.... >> barry: sandra seegars, i'm not going to discuss anything with you about what i'm doing, you are my opponent. >> seegars: hey, i'm a ward 8 resident. >> barry: yeah, you're also running against me. >> seegars: and if you win, you would be my council member as well. >> barry: of course i'm going to win, so let's.... >> seegars: so what are you going to do for me? >> barry: let's discuss it after the 14. >> seegars: marion barry, i knew him as mayor only from a distance. to me he was just another man,
and people try to treat him like he was a god or something, and i do not do that. he has charisma, but he uses good for evil. marion barry told me he was running because he needed the money, self-preservation, those were his exact words. marion barry doesn't represent anything anymore for me. nothing. he's just a lost soul. oooh, white people. you see those white people back there? huh! white people...on my street! i don't believe it! ♪ [praise music] >> hallelujah. >> and praise the lord. [applause] i'm sandra seegars. many of you know me as s.s. i'm running in september, september 14. last night i heard gunshots, somebody's child was shot. and it's happening so much, the police are outnumbered.
and that's one of the things that i'm running on, crime. how you doin'? >> boy: fine. >> seegars: that's good. i would like to see him grow up to be at least 25. i hope he makes it. we need a change, i'm the change. you want your area to improve, i can do it. vote for me, september. and praise the lord. >> seegars: what do you think of marion barry? you think he's got the juice? >> woman: nah. no, marion barry done all washed up. >> woman #2: he need to show that he's got a clean act, and he never had it when he was in office, you know. i mean, he's done some things for the community, but it's got to be more than that. we need somebody we can trust. >> seegars: i wish he wasn't in the race. he shouldn't run. healthwise, financial-wise, leadership-wise, all is gone. he's still running on his glory days. he's a people's person, and a likable person, so you can't take that
from him, and so he plays on people's sympathy. >> barry: lights, camera, action! [car horn beeps] >> woman: long time no see, since over at logan school. >> barry: are you registered to vote up here? >> woman: yes sir. >> barry: i want you to vote for me. >> woman: oh, yes, i will. >> woman #2: marion barry i always admired you, and i love you. >> barry: thank you. >> woman #2: and you know you got god on your side, so we got the best. >> barry: can't lose the stuff we use. >> woman #2: god bless you! >> man: he got me one of my first jobs working for pride. so those are the kind of things that i know that he's gonna bring. >> woman #3: i just wanted you to know that i was encouraged to register to vote because i saw you were running. >> barry: thank you so much. >> woman #3: thank you. >> reporter: mr. mayor, how do you see this campaign? >> barry: oh, i'm winning. i be winning every day. >> reporter: are you getting that from a poll or? >> barry: no, just being out there with the people. and she's losing, she knows that. that's why she's so desperate right now. she's desperate and she's a liar. >> reporter: those are pretty strong words on your part. >> barry: it's true!
>> reporter: also former mayor marion barry is attempting what is probably his last political comeback. bruce johnson has the latest on the democratic primary. >> johnson: people that would normally give to marion barry just don't want to see marion barry back in office. >> barry: well, there's been an effort to freeze me out of the money, but i don't care, i don't need much money. >> woman: would i vote for him? no. he should just stop. bow out gracefully. does he know what that means, bow out gracefully? >> this is bruce johnson reporting from southeast washington for 9 news. >> jaffe: marion barry had a tremendously positive effect on washington d.c. >> barry: under my leadership as your mayor, our city has
changed for the best. >> it was a great time, golden era. >> barry: our downtown has come alive with new shops, theaters, offices and jobs. >> berry: the city flourished. physically, cranes everywhere, buildings going up, people working. >> barry: operation first class, look at that! >> bill regardie, regardie's magazine: he was seen as the bright shining light who would lead us to the promise land. >> barry: keep rolling, keep rolling! >> mcneil: the government became open to black people, they were able to get government jobs. >> barry: i'm establishing a deputy mayor for financial management. for that position, i'm happy to announce the appointment of al hill. [applause] >> jesse jackson: the idea that blacks could run a real government was a big deal. >> barry: carol thompson, james buford, dr. ernest hardaway. >> bruce brown, filmmaker: it brought the discussion into the black household about politics, because before then there was no reason to get
involved because there was nobody that looked like you, that sounded like you. he just wasn't the mayor, he was our friend. >> ivanhoe donaldson: he loved people. he went out and he talked to them, but he remembered them, he knew their names. he gave them eye contact, he related to them, they were somebody to him and he became somebody to them. >> berry: marion would smooch it up with everybody. charisma, magnetism. >> i think that was his art. i mean, you walk in the room, people say, "mr. mayor," and they're ready to shake your hand and give you anything you want. jonetta rose-barras, author: it was like that with marion barry, he could get people to follow him. >> effi barry: wherever we would go there would just be throngs of people, and of course, throngs of women.
♪ >> tom sherwood: it was like a teenager perpetually on a date. she could be 15 years-old or 90 years-old, and barry would put on that little charm, the little moves. it was a pretty good talent if you've got it. ♪ >> effi: i had to intercept letters at home, that came to my home, where women had sent pictures of themselves, naked, in bathtubs, to him. and the ego can be huge. marion is a man and power is a very seductive mistress.
>> mark feldstein, wusa news: karen johnson was a young woman, mid-30's, who first met marion barry at a nightclub. >> reporter: do you have any comments to make, miss johnson? >> johnson: none, dear. >> reporter: karen johnson and mayor barry have been tied together in controversy. >> reporter: karen johnson... >> reporter: karen johnson... >> reporter: karen johnson is telling prosecutors that she supplied d.c. mayor marion barry with cocaine. >> reporter: the washington monthly called her "the mayor's lover." >> reporter: did you talk about the mayor and your relationship with the mayor? >> johnson: i will not comment on that. >> reporter: can you tell us, did you invoke the fifth amendment at all? >> reporter: can you tell us what you're doing today in court? >> johnson: no comment. send us a copy of this. >> washington: it was at that point where you could smell blood in the water. >> reporter: what about karen johnson? >> barry: you know, washington is such a great place and i enjoy being mayor so much, and we're working hard... >> reporter: mr. mayor, i know washington is a beautiful place, is the u.s. attorney out to get you? >> barry: ...and the citizens here are fortunate to have good progressive leadership and faith in their mayor. >> reporter: mr. mayor, are
you worried about reports of hush money? >> barry: you know, its really great to be mayor of this city. >> reporter: have you ever used cocaine? >> barry: i've answered that question before. >> reporter: can you answer it again? >> barry: and i say again, no, no, no! >> reporter: mr. mayor, is any of this true? >> barry: no. >> reporter: did you sleep with karen johnson? did you snort cocaine with karen johnson? >> barry: no. >> reporter: so you do not take drugs? you've never taken drugs? >> barry: no. >> reporter: her friends say that she was bragging about supplying to you. >> barry: where do you get this ---- from? >> reporter: do you have any comments to make? >> effi: it was very difficult for me. i'm very private. the concept of having your own space was completely destroyed. >> reporter: mayor barry and karen johnson, what do you think of that? >> reporter: have you ever seen him take drugs? has he ever had a drug problem? does he have a drug problem now? >> effi: no. he has stated emphatically that he doesn't do drugs. not being able to defend
yourself, not being able to refute any lie or any incorrect story was very, very painful. >> harry jaffe: it became something that people could not ignore. it became something that marion barry could no longer ignore. and you had the authorities involved, you had prosecution. you had joe digenova, a republican appointee, tough prosecutor. >> joe digenova: good afternoon. we've had numerous inquiries today... >> jaffe: boy, did he love sinking his teeth into that. >> digenova: the issue is the ultimate accountability through the legal and judicial process of those individuals who have breached the public trust. >> michael fauntroy: the u.s. attorney's office is a highly political player in washington, d.c., and what bigger fish to fry than the mayor of the district of columbia. >> barry: i'm appalled and outraged at the conduct of the u.s. attorney's office. there are forces in this city that don't like what we've been able to do. they don't like the fact that
we've been able to give out a significant number of minority contracts and change the economic status of people. >> reporter: democrat barry claims that the u.s. attorney, who is white and a republican, is out to get him. >> reporter: are there whites in washington who want to take washington back? >> barry: yes. >> reporter: who are they? >> barry: i don't know. they're out there. there are people who never want us to have participatory democracy, who never wanted us to have participatory relationships and control in proportion to our demographics. >> reporter: are there whites that don't like the idea that blacks are running this city? >> barry: of course there are. >> mcneil: we didn't care whether the things they were uncovering and talking about was true or not. we didn't care. we understand you're attacking him because you're attacking us. [applause] >> you know, we as catholic priests cannot endorse candidates from our position as pastor. [laughter & applause]
i said i cannot say from this pulpit... [applause] ...who we should vote for, but i know my vote is going for marion barry! [applause] mayor of the greatest city of the world! [applause] >> barry: we are living in an imperfect world where people expect us to be perfect. people expect mayors to be perfect. we try to do the right thing. people don't just stab you in the back, they stab you in the front, right straight up. >> adrienne washington: we can forgive a little womanizing, a little late night cattin' in our community 'cuz who dudn't know somebody who isn't
like that. everybody has a marion barry in their family. >> barry: we got barracudas, piranhas, alligators and crocodiles, and lions and tigers and sharks and snakes all around you. but martin luther king used to say, "a man cannot stand on your back unless it's bent." and this mayor's back is not bent. thank you. ♪ [praise music] >> lawrence guyot: marion barry delivered and people said, now that he's in trouble, he's not in trouble with us, were going to deliver for him, and they did. >> washington: he could literally go down the street on a float butt-naked with a bunch of women falling from him and he could have got
re-elected. ♪ victory today is mine >> barry for ward 8. come on out ward 8. he's the man with the plan. if he cant do it no one can! come on out! my name is dennis harvey, i'm 14, and i'm the godson of marion barry. can i ride with you? >> barry: no, you can sit in the back. >> dennis don't play with me. >> barry: i'll knock you out. >> dennis: no you wont! marion barry is an important person. he's an important person to me. he's been there for me when i've had hard times, like when i wasn't feeling too good or i was upset. marion came to just talk to me, to give me some advice. he's an excellent role model. mb, you sound completely different on the phone when you just wakin' up. >> barry: i don't want to be bothered.
i sound like ---- too and i don't want to be bothered. >> dennis: if i listen to his advice that he give me, i can succeed at being a politician. to be a good politician you must stay focused, believe in yourself, don't let worries bring you down, don't let lies get you in trouble, and lovin' the people, lovin' the youth, and doin' all you can do to help and fight for the people. >> barry: oh man, you hit the spot. uhhh. >> dennis: he's tired. well, he deserve some rest, he's a hard workin' man. what's your name? >> my name is rocky. >> dennis: okay. i'm dennis. i'm marion's godson. >> barry: he's 14 years-old and he's so sharp. articulate. but, see, those kind of guys, you got to grab them, they can go the wrong way or the right way. >> dennis: what you want to be in life? >> just myself. >> dennis: you don't wanna have no job? you don't wanna make money legally? i mean, what is it that you like in life? what is it that you like about life? >> i like -- my life is
football. >> dennis: okay, you want to do football, nothin' wrong with football. but suppose you get a touchdown, somebody tackle you, you get injured, your football career over with. you gotta have somein' else to do. >> get back up and walk. we gotta bounce. >> dennis: all right, y'all stay safe. >> you, too. >> barry! barry! barry! >> reporter: running for office is public, are you saying to the people in ward 8 you're not abusing any substance; you're not using any illegal drugs? >> barry: my recovery is my recovery. >> reporter: but don't the people have the right to know to make an informed choice about whether or not you are abusing any substance? >> barry: my recovery is my recovery. >> reporter: are you sober today? >> barry: i'm not discussing that. >> reporter: are you sober? >> dennis: the media always dogs him out instead of being appropriate sayin' the good things that he have done. and i thought that is very inappropriate and i don't think it's a good thing to do,
because he didn't do nothin' wrong to anyone in d.c., nothing. nothing. [sirens wailing] >> fauntroy: the city began to take a turn for the worse in the late1980s. >> mcneil: the government wasn't functioning in the same way. he wasn't providing the same leadership. he wasn't providing hope. >> rose-barras: often was happened was, he ended up putting a person in position who had very little skills
for the job. >> feldstein: by his third term, his administration was out of control, his two top deputy mayors were sent to prison for corruption. the graft trickled on down from the top. >> berry: cronyism was running wild in washington, our tax dollars were going to people that were not delivering. marion wasn't the same marion, he was ---- now. >> effi: all of a sudden the drinking was out of control. when you're going to four or five receptions a night, you just don't drink one drink. people who wanted to impress the mayor, or have a moment with the mayor, were plying him with liquor or whatever. they fed his weaknesses.
>> barry: we all go through the people-pleasing stage, you know? insecurity, i was insecure. friendships are hard to find, true friendships. it's tough. everybody wants a piece of you, everybody wants this, everybody wants that. some things legitimate, some not legitimate. >> effi: i became concerned and i said, you are the mayor, and therefore it's important for you to act like the mayor. but marion is stubborn. he'll do what he wants to do. >> reporter: d.c. mayor marion barry attended a christmas party at "this is it," a 14 street nightclub featuring nude dancing. >> bruce johnson, wusa news: when you first hear the stories it's kind of like, did you hear so and so and it's a rumor. and you're like, "you gottta be kidding me!" you know, you laugh a little bit about it. then you start hearing more... >> reporter: we have also learned that there is at least one more woman prepared to come forward now. >> reporter: how many women
were actually performing sex on the mayor? >> man: two. they was right in his lap. >> reporter: so he was snorting cocaine at the same time he was being rubbed? >> man: mm-huh. >> plotkin: the mayor was constantly getting in trouble. he was found in places he wasn't supposed to be, doing embarrassing things. >> berry: a woman kicked him out of her apartment, he was up there screaming from the road "let me in!" embarrassing! our mayor! this is outrageous! >> effi: it's like every time i turned on the television, supposedly, he was here, he was there, and pretty soon it's very, very difficult to determine what is fact and what is fiction, because it's all possible. >> reporter: mayor marion barry tonight angrily denied that he has been hospitalized after overdosing on cocaine. >> reporter: mr. mayor, have you ever overdosed on drugs? >> barry: that's crazy! again, that is an outrageous
kind of statement. like i said, it makes you want to vomit. >> reporter: to restore confidence, then are you prepared to engage in a series of regular drug tests? not just one but over a long period of time? >> barry: well, i'm not sure that's going to solve the problem. >> washington: he started to sweat. >> barry: for the seniors, i'm going to continue to fight for dignity and respect and help for you. we're going to continue to wage this war on drugs. we're going to continue to lead this city. >> washington: he started to slur his words. you could see that he was trying to maintain control. >> effi: he became an embarrassment. an embarrassment to friends, an embarrassment to family, embarrassment to self. >> feldstein: in a very real way, barry's own decline from drugs mirrored that of the city's decline from drugs. [sirens wailing] this was the middle of the crack cocaine epidemic.
washington was the murder capital of the united states. [woman screaming, baby crying] >> pelecanos: that was really when we needed marion barry to be the barry of 1978, and he was gone, he was wasted. >> barry: well, i was snorting cocaine and i said to myself -- i'm not the typical kind of cocaine user -- i said, i'll just do a little bit of it. but let me tell you, it just doesn't work that way. at the time, you don't know what you're doing, at least, i didn't know what i was doing with that. you know, when you're using cocaine, it takes you up and you can't, you know, you can't relax, at least immediately, and i started taking valiums to sort of bring me down. how many of y'all know somebody who you think is selling dope? how many of y'all know where a crack house is?
i'm opposed to drugs, not because they're illegal, i'm opposed to them because they mess up your mind. pcp destroys your brain cells. cocaine and heroin destroys your body. my mind is too sharp; my body is too precious for me to put some poison in my body. i wasn't even connecting between what i did and what i was saying. that's the complexity of the disease. it doesn't connect logically to what you're doing. it runs you rather than you run it. >> effi: to be preparing yourself for bed and you get a phone call at around 9:30 or a quarter of 10:00 and the chief of staff tells you that your husband has been arrested and he's at fbi headquarters.
it's like i fell into a black hole. >> crowd: crack head! you all right! we're with you, marion. >> effi: again, i felt like alice in wonderland. but it was a different alice. >> u.s. attorney: last night, shortly before 8:30 pm, marion barry, jr., mayor of washington d.c., was arrested of willful possession of crack cocaine at a downtown hotel. the arrest of mr. barry was the result of an undercover operation conducted by the metropolitan police department, the fbi, and the united states attorney's office here in the district of columbia. >> reporter: there are people in this city who believe that marion barry was targeted by you and your office because he is an effective black political leader? >> u.s. attorney: there is absolutely no basis to that
claim. >> effi: when marion was arrested, it became an international fiasco. >> jaffe: we're a racially charged city anyway, and this just lit a match. >> radio: there's been a broad split between washington's white and black communities. people in the black communities tend to rally around the mayor, often accusing the white establishment of being "out to get him." >> priest: there is no justice in america for the black man or the black woman. let us not deceive ourselves. >> rose-barras: black people thought he was set up. >> plotkin: but for white voters, that was it. they thought this was the ultimate act of chutzpah, of gall. i mean, they were done with him. >> female listener: and if i hear one more black saying that it's because he's black i'm going to throw up! >> cliff kincaid, wntr radio:
and lets dismiss all this nonsense about entrapment. nobody forced him to go to that hotel. marion barry is a pathological liar, he's a crack head. >> m. jackson: we knew that this would be used to say black people can't run anything, look what they did look, look how they act, they all a bunch of dope fiends. >> bill regardie: anything to get that son of a bitch out of office. he deserved it. [sirens wailing] >> plotkin: the trial was a spectacle. >> jaffe: this was a media feeding frenzy of the first regard. >> crack head! >> jonathon agronsky, author: i don't know how many witnesses there were, but there were scores and scores of them. but, to me, the most dramatic moment in the trial came when the doors opened at the back of the courtroom and in walks the mystery woman that we've all been hearing about, rasheeda moore.
>> feldstein: rasheeda moore was busted by the fbi and then turned by the fbi against barry. >> johnson: that was what everybody wanted to see. yeah, that's his girlfriend, but i'd never heard of rasheeda moore. who is this woman? what does she look like? what is she going to say? >> feldstein: rasheeda moore was crucial, obviously to catching barry, because finally they had penetrated someone in barry's inner circle and had gotten a camera inside and actually videotaped it. >> barry: rasheeda moore and i had been seeing each other from time to time. she was a very attractive lady, very, you know, appealing. she would call, i wouldn't take the call. but this particular evening, she said to my secretary, "it's urgent.
i gotta talk to him, i gotta talk to him! it's urgent! it's a matter of life and death." so i talked to her. she said, "i'm in town for this conference or something and i want to at least talk to you about a thing i got going." i said, "well, i'm not coming up there, i'll meet you downstairs." she calls me, she says, "i'll tell you what, i just had a bowl of soup ordered, why don't you come on upstairs." i said, "i don't wanna do that." "just for a little while, i'll have my soup and then we'll come back downstairs." i said, "okay." >> jaffe: you have this fuzzy looking view of this hotel room and it's largely quiet, it's just two people.
>> barry: drugs and alcohol mess up your judgment. i mean, your judgment is shot. it can take you from the top to the bottom. addiction is a very complex situation, there are no easy answers, there are no easy solutions, no easy anything. every day you're struggling. see, i thought i could do a little bit and stop. can't do that. just don't start. because if you have problems, next day, same problems. well, that's how it works, you stop, try, stop. you say six months, then six weeks.
then you try again. there's no logic for most of it. it's craziness. but craziness prevails it's a daily affair. daily affair. one day at a time. >> campaign worker: we've gotten the morning numbers and marion barry is behind in the neighborhood and we don't want to lose this election. please remind her to work for marion barry. >> it's a bad picture. it makes him look old, he has some teeth missing. they did it on purpose to make him look old and feeble, debilitated, not able to make it. it's a psychological thing. you know, that has a lot to do with how some people look at him as a leader. it's a wonder they didn't have him with a crack pipe in his hand.